Arena: Barclays Center
Home Floor: Brooklyn Nets
It is back, the NBA action! And after the All-Star festivities, we are heading towards the postseason window as various teams will look to make a desperate push. What an interesting window ahead of us! Thus, for various squads, this can be the make or break time, you can’t fall too behind the curve when it comes to the win/loss column, why? The game count will squeeze and from here on, teams that have around 33% wins or so will really need to win more than 50% of their games. But for some teams like Brooklyn Nets and Boston Celtics, there are top-six spots at stake to avoid the Play-in tournament.
The Nets had a tough time before the All-Star break but some brilliant performances from newly acquired players Seth Curry and Andre Drummond provide some promise. They have lost 28 and have 31 wins, the victories largely coming when Durant was an active part of the setup. On the other hand, the Celtics were on fire before the break and had lost to Pistons after going on a nine-game winning streak. They are primed for a top-six spot if they continue to mesh as they did in the pre-break window. Can they spark something special as the season resumes? To know my game total and result prediction, go to “Expert Betting Tips”. For my player-based predictions, jump to “Player Performance Prediction”.Claim Your Welcome Bonus!
Nets’ needed push, Celtics have an elite defense
Nets are lost without Durant
While a 2-1 record with new entrants Seth Curry and Andre Drummond may have inspired some confidence. The Nets have lost around 70% or more games without their ace Kevin Durant. Ben Simmons will add a great mix of defense, playmaking, and inside finishing to the squad, but it will ultimately boil down to great Durant to make something out of the season. Kyrie can become a full-time player once New York’s vaccine mandate is lifted but yes, the Nets look shallow on both ends of the floor without their leader Kevin. Patty Mills, Cam Thomas, LaMarcus Aldridge, Seth Curry, and Andre Drummond will have to keep things ticking till KD returns.
Celtics’ defensive prowess
Celtics have had the best defense in major metrics throughout February and that is a huge reason why they have won 12 out of the last 14 games. One other key has been their ability to win away from home, something that they lacked till January. The combination of Tatum, Brown, Smart, Williams III, Horford, White, and Williams can go a long way because most of these players are incredible defenders and with improved ball sharing and shooting, the Celtics can trigger a lot of unrest among the top squads in the league. Can the Celtics continue to pin down opposing offenses?
Considering the availability of players and various dynamics, the Celtics will surely have a match-up edge here. Patty Mills has had his struggles shooting-wise for the Nets while Seth Curry despite some incredible performances for the Nets will take some time to adjust against tougher opponents. The guard tandem of Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown surely outmatches Curry and Mills for the multi-faceted play. However, the biggest headache can be the frontline of the Celtics with Tatum, Williams III, and Horford is well-versed on both ends and can do a lot despite the Nets having an incredible rebounder in Drummond, as Forwards Bruce Brown, James Johnson, and Kessler Edwards haven’t been that consistent. Off the bench, Cam Thomas and LaMarcus Aldridge have done their jobs but Derrick White can be an X-Factor with his playmaking and scoring abilities.
Player Performance Prediction
Assuming they are available, these are my player-based predictions:
- I believe Jaylen Brown will clasp at least 26 points here;
- I see Seth Curry scoring at least 16 here;
- I believe Robert Williams III will block at least 3 shots;
- I believe Cam Thomas will be held below 17 points;
- I see Derrick White scoring at least 15 points here;
- I believe LaMarcus Aldridge will score at least 13 points.
Expert Betting Tips
Points Range: The Celtics have usually been in the 105-108 points range this season but they have the ability to go past 110 on a regular basis too. Defensively, they have done a great job and have allowed 97 or fewer points during most of the games before the All-Star Break. On the other hand, the Nets have been in the 109-112 points range but defensively, they have given up 113 or more regularly. The Celtics beat the Nets 126:91 making up for 217 points. I believe the Celtics will score at least 110 points here whole holding the Nets under 103. I think the total points range here is 210-220.
Prediction: Although the Celts are playing away from home, they have the match-up edge in my opinion. They have a more stable and more experienced(playing together here) lineup compared to the Nets and they can take care of business on both ends of the floor. I believe the Celtics will not allow any big runs from the Nets and stem the flow of points from the perimeter. I see the Celtics winning this game 115:101.
- Total 2 Over 110.5 for 1.93;
- Handicap 2 (-8.5) for 2.12;
- Player Props: Player Points: Jaylen Brown Over 25.5 for 1.86.